So I’ve gotten a lot questions lately about nutrition. Why not cover some basics again here?
There are so many different forms of nutrition and fad diets out there. I can’t tell you how much garbage I hear on a regular basis, but I understand the confusion. There is so much out there and much of it is conflicting information. So let me break this stuff down for you.
CrossFit’s prescription for nutrition is:
“Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch, and no sugar. Keep intake levels to that which will support exercise but not body fat.”
Sounds simple, when its laid out like that, but what does it mean? What do you actually eat? Let me break it down for you.
Start with the second sentence, which is the actual goal. “Keep intake levels to that which will support exercise but not body fat”. This goes back to some of our previous posts about eating to fuel your body. When we eat with our performance in mind, our bodies perform better. We more efficiently build muscle and burn fat. If our performance increases, our results increase. So eat to train, train hard, and look sexy naked.
Now for the foods. First off throw out any garbage you have ever heard about the food pyramid, fat is bad, carbs are bad, Atkins, weight watchers, etc. Now that that I got that out of the way, don’t ever mention them again. If you do, I will slap you in the face with a big ass peanut butter sammich.
So what to eat?
-Meat (or eggs) are your main source of protein. You need protein consistently with every meal or snack. Stick to lean sources as much as possible. Those are chicken, turkey, lean beef, and egg whites. There are of course a few more but those are the most common. Protein is crucial to build muscle and support your body.
-Vegetables. Green ones are the best. Aim for a cup or a serving with every meal. Use them as snacks if you’d like as well.
-Nuts and Seeds. Simple and natural source for healthy fats. Almonds are the best option. Try to avoid the salted mixes.
-Some fruit. Even though fruit is natural, it can be bad. Sugar is what gives fruit the sweet taste. Even though its natural sugar, your body only sees sugar. Keep fruit intake low. If you’re actively trying to lose weight, keep it very low or non-existent. If you are eating fruit, try to stick to smaller berries, like blueberry, blackberry, or strawberry. Timing plays a role in this too. It can be best used as a preworkout to spike your insulin levels, which will boost your workout energy. Other than that, try to only eat fruit early in the day, so your body will completely use it.
-Little starch. Starches are common foods such as breads, rice, grains, potatoes, etc. They are everywhere, incredibly easy to over eat, and most often the worst sources are available. Basically, our bodies process starches into sugar. When we over eat them, like most Americans do, our body becomes sugar addicted. This is where much of the obesity issue stems from. Different sources affect the body differently, as well. So all you need to know is that the best sources will be sweet potato, quinoa, healthy oats, and whole grains. Like the fruits, timing is important. Keep starches to before and/or after workouts. They are great at supplying solid energy and helping to replenish and rebuild after. Your body really has little need for them any other time of the day.
Nutrition plays a key role, no matter what your goal is. It can be tailored to lose weight/fat, gain weight, build muscle, increase performance, or whatever you’re trying to do. I will help anyone that wants help with nutrition. I only ask that you be serious about your request. Don’t waste my time by doing a couple of days then letting it go. If I take the time to write your nutrition, I don’t find it entertaining at all that you just “couldn’t help yourself”. I believe in living healthy but also living your life. So I am not going to push you to never cheat or never indulge a bit. Making change in your body takes a few weeks to allow your body to adapt. If you’re not willing to stick it out a bit, then you won’t get the result you’re looking for. Make healthy eating a habit, gain control of your body, then you will have a lot more room to play around.
Train Hard Train Smart